New research by Royal London has revealed that 5.4 million adults without a will in the UK would not know where to begin if they were to write one.
The data also showed that 59% of parents either do not have a will, or currently have one that is out of date.
Royal London says it is “especially important” for parents to have an up to date will so that if the worst were to happen, their children would be brought up by who they choose.
The research also found that since writing a will just under a third (31%) experienced a “significant life event” such as marriage or having a baby, yet more than half (53%) have not updated their will.
Royal London says that many people do not realise that if they were to marry, any previous will is automatically invalidated and is no longer of any value, “so it’s vital that wills are reviewed and kept up to date.”
More than half (54%) of the adult population do not have a will in place.
Of those who do not have a will one in four (24%) admitted they had no intention of making one, compared to a third (34%) who said that an illness would encourage them to do so.
Using the services of a solicitor is the most popular way of writing a will, with two thirds (68%) using legal assistance.
A spokesperson for Royal London commented: “It is incredibly important to have a will, not just to protect your finances but to make sure vital decisions, such as who will look after your children, are noted.”
“Once you have a will you should update it after any significant life events that could affect your financial situation such as getting married, divorced or starting a family”
“Taking these important steps allows you to have peace of mind knowing that when you’re gone your wishes will be met.”